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Scott Hicks

Scott Hicks

Gearhead

Tustin, CA/Salt Lake City, UT

Scott Hicks's Passions

Hiking & Camping
Skiing
Snowshoeing
Climbing

Scott Hicks's Bio

I was born in Southern California and grew up exploring in the Sierra Nevada mountains and have been following the next mountain ranges and backcountry adventures ever since. After 6 years in Flagstaff, AZ running around the San Francisco Peaks, Sedona, and the Grand Canyon, I decided Utah was the next place for me.

I love backpacking, climbing/mountaineering, and skiing. I'd love to help you with anything you need to get you out on your next trip!
Hit me up at:
shicks@backcountry.com,
801-204-4553

Scott Hicks

Scott Hickswrote a review of on August 10, 2017

5 5

Familiarity: I've used it once or twice and have initial impressions

After getting tired of squeezing into my UL tents while car camping, I decided to take out a true car camping tent and I couldn't have been happier. The Big House 6 is incredibly easy to set up for such a big tent. It was just my climbing partner, myself, and our gear in the tent and we had more room than we could have asked for. Winds picked up pretty heavily during the trip and the Big House stood strong. We didn't use the Deluxe Vestibule with it, but I think it would be great addition to the tent. I found nothing lacking at all on the tent in setup, durability, or internal features. We were using it as a base camp during a climbing trip, so the 18 interior pockets let us organize all out personal gear. It also has a Fast Fly option with the footprint that would be a great option in good weather. The briefcase style carrying case is a huge upgrade from trying to stuff such a large tent in stuff sack. Looking forward to using it again!

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Scott Hicks

Scott Hickswrote a review of on August 10, 2017

5 5

Familiarity: I've used it once or twice and have initial impressions

Big Agnes sleep system bags are awesome. I had never slept through the night like I did until I first used one. This double bag is no exception. I used it at Ibex, UT on a climbing trip where the temps got down to low 40s. Never once felt any cold or draft in the bag and slept great! We used it car camping, but the 650 fill packs down small enough and in a compression sack and is light enough that backpacking with it is definitely possible! We used two regular size Q Core SLX pads which worked perfectly. Picking up one of the a double wide SLX pads would add even more comfort! It's the first double bag I've used and I had a great trip with it. Definitely looking forward to trying out the King Solomon 15 degree bag in colder temps.

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Scott Hicks

Scott Hickswrote a review of on July 18, 2017

5 5

Familiarity: I've put it through the wringer

Definitely my favorite UL backpacking tent out there at the moment. The new HV design maximizes room which is always a plus with lighter tents that often need to shave room in their design to take weight off.

Set up is extremely easy, quick, and painless. The double doors are also a great feature so your and your tent partner don't have to wrestle each other while one of you gets out of the tent.

This is a fully featured UL backpacking tent that leaves nothing to be desired. I'm looking forward to many more days on the trail with it.

Definitely pick up the footprint as well. A huge addition to save the bottom of the tent from use while also being able to use the Fast Fly option.

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Scott Hicks

Scott Hickswrote a review of on May 17, 2016

5 5

Familiarity: I've used it several times
Fit: True to size
Height: 5' 10"
Weight: 150 lbs
Size Purchased: Large

This is a great, lightweight 3-layer shell. It is so light it is hard to believe that it is in fact a 3-layer, but when the precipitation starts coming down, you immediately know that it is a 3-layer piece. Great waterproofing and highly breathable. Aimed at trail running, but I like to use it while spring touring or throwing it in my pack while backpacking if there is a small chance of showers and I don't want to lug around a heavier waterproof shell. At 6.5 ounces, it is insanely light! Athletic fit so I went with the large to allow for some extra room underneath. If you are only using it for trail running then the extra room is probably not necessary, but since I wanted to stretch it to other activities the extra room was a good idea. Definitely impressed with this shell!

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Scott Hicks

Scott Hickswrote a review of on April 27, 2016

5 5

Familiarity: I've put it through the wringer

These poles have treated me well for all types of skiing. For split-boarding and mountaineering focused scenarios, you may want something that collapses a bit more like the BD Expedition 3s, but for all my skiing these have worked great. The baskets were a little weird to put on at first, you just have to make sure they are threaded correctly then crank them until they cant turn any more. Definitely my go to poles for ski touring.

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Scott Hicks

Scott Hickswrote a review of on April 8, 2016

5 5

Familiarity: I've put it through the wringer

This was my first Deuter backpack that I bought about 3 years ago now, and it's also the pack that made me fall in love with Deuter. It is such an awesome pack for longer backpacking trips with heavier loads. It's not the lightest pack compared to other packs of similar capacity, but it holds weight extremely well. I didn't like the way that lighter 75 liter+ packs held weight; and this holds weight amazingly. The suspension system is so comfortable and hasn't left me with an overly hot and sweaty back at all. It is easy to adjust for any torso size and has tons of great features but still nice and simple in design. It includes a rain cover in the bottom compartment as well. Lugging around a 50+ pound pack isn't always very fun, but when you are, a pack like this makes it so much more bearable. Also has features that make it perform well in climbing-specific trips, but in those scenarios you may want to go with a lighter pack.

Reach out to me if you have any questions on backpacks!

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Scott Hicks

Scott Hickswrote a review of on April 8, 2016

5 5

Familiarity: I've put it through the wringer

Enjoying this bag so far. I wanted something with a lower temp rating and fairly light that packs down small that also had a lower price so I wouldn't be so afraid to beat it up a bit more on long and dirty backpacking trips. This is working very well so far. I used it down into 30 degree temperatures, not sure exactly what temperature, but my feet got a bit cold. It was definitely at its limit, but I was pretty happy with the warmth. Great product for the value and it also comes with a compression sack.

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Scott Hicks

Scott Hickswrote a review of on April 8, 2016

4 5

This is my go to for warmer weather backpacking and climbing trips. Super light and packs all together nicely. Boils water really quickly, not the best for simmering at lower temperatures, but I rarely use it for that. Mostly just boiling water and/or cooking soup. The igniter failed out on mine pretty quickly after a trip or two, but I didn't exchange it out because I always carry a small lighter anyway. If I am going on a cold weather winter skiing/mountaineering trip, I would pick a different stove as this loses efficiency pretty quickly in cold weather. Not a huge issue if you keep your fuel canisters in your parka or sleeping bag, but still something to think about.

Feel free to reach out if you have any questions on stoves and backpacking gear!

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Scott Hicks

Scott Hickswrote a review of on April 8, 2016

5 5

Familiarity: I've used it once or twice and have initial impressions

This was my first season using this pack and I'm loving it so far; just like all the Deuter packs that I've used. Performs very well in everything from ski touring and mountaineering, to general backpacking. It's got all the features you could need in a pack like this; ski-slots, ice-axe loops, bivy mat, hydration sleeve, and easy access from the top, bottom and sides. Felt very comfortable and solid while moving with a full pack and skis over all types of terrain. Great pack!

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Scott Hicks

Scott Hickswrote a review of on March 22, 2016

5 5

Familiarity: I've put it through the wringer

I'm always wearing a helmet whether I'm on rock or slogging up a snow slope, and the Half Dome has worked well in all scenarios I've put it through so far. Easy adjustment dial on the back works well with gloves on when it is cold and it has a wide range of adjustment for when I may be wearing a beanie or hat underneath. Pretty light and doesn't make my head too hot when the sun is out. I'm not looking for anything too fancy in my climbing helmets, and this one has treated me well.

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Scott Hicks

Scott Hickswrote a review of on March 21, 2016

Awesome Essential
5 5

Familiarity: I've put it through the wringer

I loved the Suunto Core from the get-go for all my backcountry outings. Quickly however, I started wearing it all the time. It's got everything I could ask for in a watch to take mountaineering, backpacking, and ski touring, but looks nice enough to wear out anywhere. Aside from the great functions of the altimeter, compass, and thermometer; the Barometer is huge plus for me. When you are in any terrain with a possible chance of a storm, it's great to be able to monitor the barometer(or set the storm warning alarm) to time your descents and/or escapes to shelter! When wearing it on your wrist, it isn't gathering the accurate ambient temperature due to your body heat. If temperature is a key piece of info for you then it's best to keep it in the brain or pocket of your pack to get it more accurate to the outside temp. I don't expect this watch to give up anytime soon whatsoever, but when it does, I am immediately buying another Suunto.

Also: just a shout out to the Suunto customer service, the first one I got had software issues with the altimeter and temperature after a couple trips to altitude, and they replaced it immediately! Thanks Suunto!

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Scott Hicks

Scott Hickswrote a review of on March 20, 2016

A great versatile shell
5 5

Familiarity: I've used it several times
Fit: True to size

So far I am loving the Spire! I have mostly used it while ski-touring, and it has performed well! I was looking for a versatile shell for both skiing and climbing that I wouldn't be afraid to beat up a bit and so far this seems to fit the bill. With the harness compatible pockets, zip-off powder skirt to shed some weight from the piece, and two way front zip for belaying, it more than works in climbing/mountaineering scenarios. Looking forward to putting it through some wet and snowy PNW volcanoes this spring!

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Scott Hicks

Scott Hickswrote a review of on March 20, 2016

5 5

Familiarity: I've used it once or twice and have initial impressions

This is a great water filter for when I am going on longer trail runs and/or backpack trips when I am also focusing on going fast and light. Since it's so light, it's a no-brainer to throw in your pack for any trip out. It is really easy to clean out by just opening the end and blowing out the build-up inside! It has definitely earned a place in my pack on all of my trips! It is much quicker and easier than using a larger water filter on shorter hikes where you don't need to store much water, just get rehydrated. I can't think of any trip in the backcountry where I wouldn't just put this in my pack! Super versatile range of uses from fishing to trail running to through hiking and beyond.

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Scott Hicks

Scott Hickswrote a review of on February 29, 2016

5 5

Familiarity: I've used it several times

This is my go to for a classic mountaineering axe. Very light, shaves a just few ounces off the regular BD Raven, but ounces make pounds and pounds make pain! If you really care about an additional extra couple of ounces, then the Raven Ultra may be for you to save a just bit more weight, but for me this hits a sweet spot that still feels solid in hand. Full steel pick gives extra confidence that an aluminum pick just does not.

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Scott Hicks

Scott Hickswrote a review of on February 29, 2016

4 5

Familiarity: I've put it through the wringer
Fit: True to size

Yes, there are superior double boots out there now that are lighter and more comfortable, but these double plastic boots have been all over the world in all types of conditions and elevations. Remember: mountaineers have climbed countless 8,000 meter peaks with these and Alex Lowe used to climb WI6 in double plastics. They can do any job you want them to do. As other reviewers have said, the most important thing with these boots is tying them correctly. Tighten the liner nice and tight and the lower laces on the outerboot tight as well, but keep the top laces on the outerboot loose. Also, the heel cup is slightly small. It fits my foot perfectly but that may be of concern to others. The first thing I would do after buying these boots is go and pick up some SuperFeet Green insoles. That will improve the fit and comfort after long days tremendously. Four stars just due to the fact that there are extremely superior boots out there now, but these are true workhorses of the mountaineering world.

If you have any questions on these boots or any other mountaineering boots, reach out to me and I can help you out.

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Scott Hicks

Scott Hickswrote a review of on February 26, 2016

Faithful Servant!
5 5

Familiarity: I've put it through the wringer

After almost 4 years of heavy use, this tent is still holding up strong. Incredibly light and packable, yet still sturdy enough to handle adverse conditions. Held up admirably in an unexpected High Sierra wind storm at 11,000 feet. Brooks Range's quality throughout all their tents is present in this great, ultralight backpacking tent. If you are an ounce counter but still want a sturdy tent in any 3-season condition, this is a great option.

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Scott Hicks

Scott Hickswrote a review of on February 26, 2016

Great Home for Winter Conditions
5 5

Familiarity: I've used it several times

The Trango is a great 4-season tent, with extremely livable internal dimensions. This extra space inside compared to other similar two person 4 season tents results in a slightly heavier tent when packed, but it is worth it. Often times, the tent is split up between members of the group to spread out the weight. If you are really concerned about weight, then a double wall tent probably isn't the best choice to begin with. This tent is extremely sturdy, when set up correctly with guy lines, it feels like nothing will make it budge. There is a reason why this tent has been on expeditions all over the world from Patagonia to the Himalayas to Antarctica. Awesome 4-season tent to shield you from the outside conditions, that lets you relax and focus on warming up your fingers and toes, and not worry about if your tent is going to collapse or not!

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